Tips for Getting Shift Coverage on New Year’s Eve

Some people work in industries where the New Year’s Eve shift is highly coveted – the food industry, for instance, often sees an increase in tips on nights that are hopping. But, just because this shift is coveted by some, that doesn’t mean it’s convenient for you.

So, what do you do when you’re scheduled to work and, instead, would rather party? What are your options when you want to swap out bartending for a little more bar attending? Get a coworker to help! And this starts with the following:

Ask early

Calling your co-worker at 4:00 PM on December 31st and asking them if they’ll take your shift will probably be met with a response you don’t like (i.e., incredulous laughter). A head’s up is essential whenever you’re switching shifts, but on high party nights, it’s even more important. If you want your New Year’s Eve shift covered, ask as early as possible. You might have to ask as often as possible, too. 

Point out the benefits

Some companies pay time and a half for New Year’s Eve shifts. If your company does, point this out to your coworkers. After all, money talks and people tend to listen. Even if a coworker isn’t in the mood to do you any favors, they might be in the mood to cover their rent a bit more easily. 

Offer them something worth their while

Do you have something your coworker wants? Maybe a cabin in the mountains they can stay at for a weekend or season tickets to the local NBA games? If you do, sweeten the deal by sweetening the pot. Don’t merely ask them to cover your shift…bribe them, too!

Present them with an IOU

One of the most appealing reasons to cover someone’s shift is reciprocity: they cover yours and you do the same for them. However, something a little more concrete may be needed, like an actual IOU that you can present. It might not be legally-binding, but it’s the thought and the conviction that counts. Odds are, your coworker will appreciate the sentiment – maybe they’ll even give you extra points for your liberal use of glitter. 


When all else fails, beg! Sure, you’ll have to swallow your pride to do so, but desperate times call for desperate measures. Some coworkers might ignore your cries and pleas, but others may realize just how important taking the night off is to you. If they don’t have plans already, this may make them more willing to cave to your request.

New Year’s Eve is a night of fun and festivity…unless you’re stuck at work! If you want the night off, these tips can help. Of course, there’s always the “call in sick” strategy – you can’t come in because you have the flu…te of champagne in your hand. It’s not the most successful ploy (nor one we highly encourage), but you never know. 

A Take My Shift attendance policy helps you and your staff ring in the New Year on the right foot. Don’t forget to sign up for our mailing list. We’ll keep you up-to-date on how to keep your life full and fun. And download our app for tips and tricks on the go. You can get it at iTunes or the Google Play Store